Myah Enochs, like most soon-to-be college graduates, had a lot on her mind in the weeks leading up to PennWest Edinboro’s spring 2023 commencement ceremony.

While her peers contemplated the next steps of their academic and/or professional journeys, Enochs was focused on ensuring faculty and students at Edinboro had access to up-to-date, functioning classroom technology.

After working as a student technician in Information Technology Services from August 2020 until January 2022, the computer science major was hired as a full-time learning technology analyst in PennWest’s Learning Technology Services (LTS) Department.

“Being in a technical position, I picked up tons of things about computers that I needed to know to enter the IT field,” she said of her experiences rebuilding machines with custom images, updating software, doing diagnostics and performing regular maintenance. “The hands-on learning also really helped in my classes. It’s helped me realize the value of actually understanding what I’m learning.”

A 2018 graduate of Moshannon Valley School District in Clearfield County, Pennsylvania, Enochs first heard about Edinboro’s computer science program at a college fair. After comparing costs and making a few visits to campus, the decision was easy.

“I visited a few times, and everyone just seemed so nice and ready to help out,” she said. “I made a little family up here.”

But despite making friends, her transition from high school to college wasn’t without struggles.

“I was not a good student my first year. I was a straight-C student and I didn’t pass two classes that I needed to move on,” she said. “I asked my professor (Ellen Zimmer), ‘What were my downfalls? What could I have done better?’ She told me to do the work and study. Since then, I really realized that I needed to put in the effort.”

With tough love from her faculty mentor and a commitment to taking classwork more seriously, Enochs found her groove.

“Ellen Zimmer was absolutely fantastic, especially as a leader for women in computer science,” Enochs said of the now-retired faculty member. “She was someone to look up to because she is such a strong person.”

Now an employee herself, the 23-year-old aims to mentor other students – especially young women – who are pursuing a similar path. She encourages students to stop by her office with any questions they have.

“I know exactly what they're going through because I am still taking classes,” she said. “I tell them all the time about my own experiences. The first year is going to be hard. But I let them know that they can come back from it, and that I will always try to support them. I’m just downstairs.”

In addition to providing support for classroom technology and events, her current responsibilities include managing the LTS student workers, some of whom are older than she is. Even though she faced a bit of a learning curve with the audio and visual equipment, she is happy to have found a job she enjoys.

“I just really like computers. I like learning how they work, and I enjoy programming. It just opened up an entire world where you can move up or laterally in so many places,” she said. “And I love being in a position where I can directly interact with professors in a meaningful way – where we can actively help them and, by extension, help the students.”